pike wrote: ↑
Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:45 pm
I'm flying again after a 3-year layoff. I was mostly flying and landing at low altitude (Quest in Fl.). Now I'm in the mountains and flying at 10,000. I need any advice you would offer on landing in thin air. LZ is at 9000 ft. Thanks in advance. (BTW, hi to the gang at Quest from "Guitar George")
After a lot of flying at 5000' (1,5km) LZs, when I went back to sea level, my first flare was a surprise. Everything looked and felt right, but my flare took me to an instant five yards (meters) high. At my old LZs, this would have resulted in a Richter-scale whack, but in the thick air, my big glider just parachuted down nicely. Since you are going the other way (landing at higher LZs), I would say that you should flare a bit early (as compared to your lower landings), and very abruptly. There will be much less chance of "ballooning" up in the thinner air than you may expect.
Also, don't be shy about using oxygen there, before anybody local does, until your body has had a few months to adapt to the lower level of oxygen at your altitude. Headaches, dizziness, nausea, or any loss of mental focus means that you need oxygen immediately, and do not fly without it then. Watch this guy, calling the "Four of Spades."
You will not be able to feel a lack of oxygen, until it gets serious.